Peach Crisp…for dinner?

Just a thought. Because it’s August and you won’t get peaches like these for a whole year. Plus, your kid will never forget it – peach crisp for dinner is the kind of thing that could make for intensely fond memories of being a child. A hot lazy day, after some kind of summer camp involving…canoes? This sweet dinner in the back yard. Maybe in a hammock. Barefoot. A shallow bowl, warm peach juices mingling with the runny edges of slightly melted vanilla ice cream. Under the thick green summer canopy of a backyard tree, the sound of sprinklers. Ok, maybe I’m getting a little carried away, but you can see where I’m headed. I would definitely go for it. Peach crisp and a scoop of vanilla ice cream for dinner. And a glass of milk, you know, to make it healthy.

All you have to do is peel the peaches, slice them, toss them with small amounts of sugar, lemon juice and a little cornstarch, rub together the oatmeal topping and bake. There are no worrisome techniques to master (see pate sucrée), no finicky chilling of pastry, no sieving of custard. There is no need for fancy or hard to come by flavorings. No trip to the liquor store. Just fresh peaches and everything else is in the pantry.

Normally I only post a recipe once a week or so but it seems like this is sort of urgent. A peach emergency! Peach season will be over in a week or two!

Peach Crisp

  • 6-8 peaches (or 6 peaches and a small basket of raspberries for the most sublime thing ever)
  • 4 tbsp white sugar
  • 1 tbsp cornstarch
  • juice of half a lemon
  • 1/4 lb cold butter
  • 1 c. brown sugar
  • 3/4 c. flour
  • 3/4 c/ oatmeal
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  1. Preheat the oven to 350.
  2. Peel, pit and slice the peaches. I cut each peach into 12 pieces. Rinse raspberries, if using.
  3. In a medium bowl toss the peaches with the 4 tbsp sugar, cornstarch and lemon. Set aside.
  4. Cut the butter into 8 pieces and put into a large bowl or the bowl of a food processor.
  5. Add the brown sugar, flour, oatmeal, cinnamon and salt. Toss with the butter.
  6. Rub the butter into the dry ingredients with your fingers. The way to do this is to pinch a piece of flour coated butter and rub it between your fingers, pushing it through the dry ingredients until the mixture has a crumbly consistency and there are no more large pieces of butter. If you are using a a food processor, pulse until the largest piece of butter is the size of a pea. (not a tender tiny, one of the bigger kind)
  7. Put the fruit into a medium oval baking dish or an 8 x 8 pan. Pour 1/2 the crisp topping over the fruit, reserving the rest for a future crisp. It will keep in a sealed container for a couple of weeks in the refrigerator. Pat the topping gently over the fruit.
  8. Bake for 30-40 minutes or until the juices are bubbling around the edges of the pan.

And just because I say you should make this for dinner, please don’t let that stop you from making it for dessert. Truthfully, that’s what I usually do! Now I have to go set up my hammock. 

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